(CBS) – Some Chicago neighbors say “Not here.” They don’t want a medical marijuana dispensary near their homes.
The site is in the 2800 block of North Halsted in the Lakeview neighborhood. It could get approved in just a few days.
CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov reports.
Clare Campbell Walshe lives just off Halsted and Diversey in Lakeview. Smack in the middle of all the condos and family homes that now dominate the area sits an empty building that is a proposed medical-marijuana dispensary site.
Campbell Walshe and more than 500 others have signed this petition to keep it out.
“It’s just the wrong location for a high-risk business—any high-risk business, because it’s where people live,” she says.
The basis for opponents’ concern is the fact that, by law, the dispensary would be a “cash only” business–tens of thousands of dollars a day would be exchanged.
Opponents say reports from states with open dispensaries show a spike in crime around those locations. But Illinois law states they can’t open within 1,000 feet of a school or daycare. That doesn’t help neighbor Deepa Garg and her family.
“What about right next to homes where children live?” she says.
The listed address for MedMar Inc., the company that wants the dispensary, is in an Edgewater high rise. The media contact, Richard Hall, wasn’t available, but he and other MedMar officials are asking for a special-use permit for the site, something the residential group is ready to fight at the hearing next week.
Opponents stress they are not opposed to medicinal marijuana, just this proposed Lakeview location.
An attorney for MedMar says the company is confident its proposal meets zoning standards and they look forward to obtaining all necessary approvals going forward.
Ward 44 Ald. Tom Tunney has not taken a stand on the project. A staffer says he wants more information.